SWEDEN - Muslim Woman Refuses Handshake

Arno Froese

A Swedish Muslim woman has won compensation after her job interview was ended when she refused a handshake.

Farah Alhajeh, 24, was applying for a job as an interpreter when she declined to shake the hand of a male interviewer for religious reasons.

She placed her hand over her heart in greeting instead.

The Swedish labor court ruled the company had discriminated against her and ordered it to pay 40,000 kronor ($4,350; £3,420) in compensation.

Some Muslims avoid physical contact with members of the opposite sex, except for those in their immediate family.

However handshakes are traditional in Europe. Additionally, anti-discrimination legislation may forbid companies and public bodies from treating people differently because of their gender.

Sweden’s discrimination ombudsman’s office, which represented 24-year-old Ms. Alhajeh, said the judgment had taken into account “the employer’s interests, the individual’s right to bodily integrity, and the importance of the state to maintain protection for religious freedom.”

Her refusal to shake hands on religious grounds was protected by the European Convention on Human Rights, it said, and the company’s policy in demanding a specific greeting was detrimental to Muslims.

Europe’s handshake rows

• In 2016 a Swiss school’s decision to exempt two Muslim boys from shaking both male and female teachers’ hands after they refused to shake the hand of a female teacher caused uproar and led to the family’s citizenship process being suspended

• In April, an Algerian woman was denied French citizenship after refusing to shake the hand of an official during her citizenship ceremony

-www.bbc.com, 16 August 2018

Arno's commentary

Europe is experiencing something unusual. Islam is establishing itself on the European continent. This is not surprising, because Europeans went all over the world subjecting the native populations to their laws and regulations. For example, on the American continent (North and South), Europeans established 35 sovereign nations, subjecting the native populations under their laws, rules, and culture. Now Muslims are coming to Europe and demanding their rights.

Today, Europe shows decreasing interest in religion, but religion is part of the culture of the continent.

Will this dilemma be solved? We are totally convinced it will, because of prophetic Scripture documenting that the world will become one.

Muslims have their Koran, a book considered to be inspired. But in reality, it is largely copied from the Old and New Testaments, yet rewritten and altered by the founder of the new religion, Mohammed.

Where does the veil come from? In Genesis 24, Abraham tells his servant to find a wife for his son Isaac. The amazing and beautiful story ends in verses 64-65: “And Rebekah lifted up her eyes, and when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel. For she had said unto the servant, What man is this that walketh in the field to meet us? And the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself.” For us Christians, this is a wonderful prophetic picture of the Church being the bride of Christ, who will one day see Him as He is.

In the meantime, the Muslim issue in Europe will be solved. Although a number of right-wing political parties are campaigning on an anti-immigrant platform, compromise will eventually be reached. But, as already mentioned, in the end all nations of the world will be one, because all nations are ruled by the god of this world.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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